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Quantitative and Chemical Biology Program takes shape

Sep. 27, 2012, 10:18 AM

The Chemical and Physical Biology Admissions (CPB-A) Program, an inter-departmental first-year graduate admissions program at Vanderbilt University, has been renamed the Quantitative and Chemical Biology (QCB) Program.

Current program director David Piston, Ph.D., Louise B. McGavock Chair and professor of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics, will continue in this role for the renamed program.

David Piston, Ph.D.

The CPB Admissions Program was established in 2000 by Albert Beth, Ph.D., professor of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics, to attract more students with backgrounds in chemistry, engineering, mathematics, physics and other quantitative sciences.

Students take core coursework and sample a variety of laboratory experiences. By the end of their “QCB” year, they will choose one of 12 participating basic science programs and departments in the School of Medicine and College of Arts and Science for their graduate training.

Since 2000, the program has enrolled 93 students, most of whom have pursued graduate training in fields such as structural biology, chemical biology and molecular biophysics.

“This is an exciting update for the program, as well as an opportunity to raise its profile,” said Susan Wente, Ph.D., associate vice chancellor for Research and senior associate dean for Biomedical Sciences. “We look forward to the continued success of the Quantitative and Chemical Biology Program under Dave Piston’s stewardship,” Wente said.

“As Al Beth foresaw when he founded this program, the demand for students with quantitative and chemical backgrounds in biomedical research is continuing to rise,” said Piston, who also is professor of Physics and Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, and director of the Program in Systems Biology.

“With this name change, we will broaden our recruiting base to attract outstanding students to Vanderbilt,” he said.

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